it·er·a·tive | \ˈi-tə-ˌrā-tiv, -rə- \

Definition of iterative 

: involving repetition: such as

a : expressing repetition of a verbal action

b : utilizing the repetition of a sequence of operations or procedures iterative programming methods

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Other Words from iterative

iteratively adverb

Examples of iterative in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Editor’s note: Because online services are often iterative, gaining new features and performance improvements over time, this review is subject to change in order to accurately reflect the current state of the service. Ian Paul, PCWorld, "Hide My Ass Pro 4 review: A noticeable upgrade with great speeds," 27 June 2018 Tesla has defended its iterative approach, arguing that its features, in conjunction with attentive humans, are already providing for significantly safer cars. Michael Laris, Washington Post, "Tesla on Autopilot system sped up, didn’t brake before crash, federal investigators say," 7 June 2018 On one table, though, Intel has revealed all: a pair of prototype PC devices with not one, but two screens, surrounded by a number of iterative prototypes that led to the final result. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "How Intel is quietly designing the future of dual-display PCs inside its labs," 4 June 2018 What argument about the public option and the iterative stuff. Recode Staff, Recode, "Full transcript: Vox Editor at Large Ezra Klein on Recode Media," 14 June 2018 Basically, smartphone companies need to focus on developing varied models and features rather than saturating the market with iterative devices and multiple ad campaigns. Shannon Liao, The Verge, "China’s smartphone market saw its biggest drop in demand since 2013," 26 Apr. 2018 This iterative process has been in place behind the scenes at Facebook for almost its entire 14-year history. Michal Lev-ram, Fortune, "Facebook Tries to Bring More Transparency to Opaque Set of Guidelines," 24 Apr. 2018 The development of the overall system uses an iterative approach and is based on early testing and continuous optimization. Houston Chronicle, "Cyberattack hits data systems of at least 4 gas networks," 4 Apr. 2018 This allows for the rapid and iterative prototyping that created the original bGeigie, and its latest iteration, the bGeigie Nano. Kendra Pierre-louis, Newsweek, "How Civic Science Is Changing Environmentalism," 26 Oct. 2014

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'iterative.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of iterative

15th century, in the meaning defined above

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Dictionary Entries near iterative


iterated integral




it figures


Statistics for iterative

Last Updated

4 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for iterative

The first known use of iterative was in the 15th century

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Britannica English: Translation of iterative for Arabic Speakers

Comments on iterative

What made you want to look up iterative? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


one that holds something together

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